Working Group  “Courses in Tropical Dermatology"

In times of a constantly growing worldwide tourism, military operations in the tropics and a migration from tropical or subtropical countries to Europe, dermatologists are more and more challenged to deal with tropical dermatoses. The International Society of Dermatology in the Tropics, which brings together experts in this field throughout Europe, organizes annual congresses on the most important topics of tropical dermatology. In cooperation with the German Dermatological Society (DDG) and the Bernhard-Nocht-Institute for Tropical Medicine in Hamburg, Germany, the ISDT regularly organizes tropical dermatological courses and seminars in the tropics.

For dermatologists who want to deal more intensively with the dermatological problems of returning travelers and migrants, but also of people in the countries of origin of tropical dermatoses, the ISDT offers since 2014 a three-part curricular further training in tropical dermatology certified by the DDA (German Dermatological Academy). After completion of the 3 seminar parts (basic, advanced and special seminar) specialists for dermatology can acquire the certificate for tropical dermatology (DDA). The seminar curriculum can be found here.

The organization of the certified seminars in tropical dermatology involves considerable effort. Each year up to 6 full-day seminars (two basic, two advanced and two special seminars) take place in different German cities (Hamburg, Bielefeld, Cologne, Frankfurt, Leipzig, Dresden and others).

The courses in Tropical Dermatology will be offered "on site" with the support of the DDG in cooperation with dermatological colleagues in the tropics. Under the guidance of experienced tropical dermatologists, patients with skin diseases rare in Europe will be presented and discussed in small groups. Practical knowledge (e.g: How do I examine a patient for leprosy? How do I treat cutaneous leishmaniasis? How is good medicine possible in resource-poor countries?) can be acquired there close to the patient.

So far, foreign courses have taken place in Moshi/Tanzania (2x), Colombo/Sri Lanka (2x) and Yogyakarta/Indonesia. The 6th Course in Tropical Dermatology was held from 25th to 30th October 2018 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. It consisted of an international congress part on tropical dermatological topics, a separate, German-language DDA advanced seminar and a joint visit to the university dermatology clinic as well as a leprosy clinic in Phnom Penh (each with patient presentations in small groups). (Conference report)

The working group Courses in Tropical dermatology of the ISDT, under the direction of Prof. Helmut Schöfer, Frankfurt/M. and Prof. Isaak Effendy, Bielefeld, was founded in order to support the board of ISDT in the organization of future courses. After Cambodia 2018 now the 7th course will take place from 17th to 22nd October 2019 in Manaus/Brazil, combined with a basic seminar and the visit of a tropical dermatological clinic as well as a leprosy clinic. These courses have a limited number of participants and the course in Manaus is fully booked already.  (Course information)

If you have any questions regarding courses and seminars in tropical dermatology or if you are interested in participating, please contact the organizing agency (, the board of the ISDT or in case of foreign courses directly the two chairmen of the AG Courses in Tropical Dermatology:


Prof. Dr. med. Helmut Schöfer (

Prof. Dr. med. Isaak Effendy (